Yesterday, Diego Prieto Hernández, the director of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), expressed optimism regarding the completion of the restoration of all historical movable and immovable properties that were damaged in the earthquakes of 2017, within this year. The earthquakes were a significant catastrophe, causing substantial damage to the heritage sites.
During a ceremony overseen by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, the restoration efforts of the old Palace of Cortés, now known as the Museum of the People of Morelos, located in the heart of Morelos capital, were examined. Prieto made comparisons of the destruction caused by the earthquakes to the effects of decades of neoliberalism on the nation.
Prieto revealed that in Morelos, the earthquakes had adversely affected 259 federally owned historical buildings and monuments, along with nearly 200 buildings of historical significance. He mentioned that over 85 percent of these properties have been successfully restored to their former glory.
Prieto, as the head of INAH, assured that the institution will bolster its efforts to expedite the restoration of all movable and immovable properties that were damaged during the earthquakes. He affirmed the institute’s commitment to preserving the heritage of Morelos, Mexico, and also that of humanity on the whole.
He elaborated on the restoration efforts at the Palacio de Cortés, which was reopened to the public in 2023 after extensive restoration work. Not only were the architectural structures of the palace restored, but the clock tower was also recovered, and Diego Rivera’s murals were restored. Surprisingly, other murals were discovered in the process within this magnificent building. He proudly claimed that the building is now in a better condition than it was before the earthquake struck.
President López Obrador, who accompanied Prieto Hernández on a tour of the venue, emphasized that Mexico is a cultural power, deriving its strength from a rich reserve of cultural, moral and spiritual values from civilizations that existed prior to the Spanish Conquest 500 years ago.
He expressed satisfaction over the fact that the museum is named after the People of Morelos and not after the Palace of Cortés. He stressed the importance of acknowledging and remembering our past. He encouraged the people not to be influenced by others and reminded them that they are the heirs of an ancient and valued culture.
He pledged continued support for the reconstruction program of buildings and temples and everything associated with it, as it represents the nation’s history. He reminded that without understanding our roots and where we come from, it would be challenging to comprehend where we are headed.
The Palacio de Cortés, now the Museum of the People of Morelos, is located in the city’s first square. It is open to the public from Tuesday to Sunday, from 9 AM to 6 PM. The admission fee is 75 pesos, but entry is free on Sundays.